Thursday, September 6, 2012

Clinton Proving Once Again He "Is" the Master Politician...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
-vs- Tyranny

Clinton at DNC

Following the train derailment in 2008, and the subsequent train wreck that ensued in 2009 with Barrack Obama as the conductor, I must admit to having fond (and foggy) memories of Bubba Clinton.

That aside, Bill Clinton's nominating speech last night was vintage Clinton. He remains the 20th and 21st century (so far) master and grand daddy of all politicians. What I found impressive was the lions share of his speech was accurate.

FactCheck.ORG - Former President Bill Clinton’s stem-winding nomination speech was a fact-checker’s nightmare: lots of effort required to run down his many statistics and factual claims, producing little for us to write about.

Republicans will find plenty of Clinton’s scorching opinions objectionable. But with few exceptions, we found his stats checked out.

Overselling ‘Obamacare’

The worst we could fault him for was a suggestion that President Obama’s Affordable Care Act was responsible for bringing down the rate of increase in health care spending, when the fact is that the law’s main provisions have yet to take effect.

Clinton said that “for the last two years, health care costs have been under 4 percent in both years for the first time in 50 years.” That’s true, as reported by the journal Health Affairs in January of this year. But Clinton went too far when he added: “So let me ask you something. Are we better off because President Obama fought for health care reform? You bet we are.”

Actually, the major provisions of the 2010 law — the individual mandate, federal subsidies to help Americans buy insurance, and big reductions in the growth of Medicare spending — haven’t yet taken effect. Experts mainly blame the lousy economy for the slowdown in health care spending. As a report by economists and statisticians at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services reported last year, for example (as quoted in the Washington Post): “Job losses caused many people to lose employer-sponsored health insurance and, in some cases, to forgo health-care services they could not afford.”

And this year, the New York Times also reported:

New York Times, April 28, 2012:
The growth rate mostly slowed as millions of Americans lost insurance coverage along with their jobs. Worried about job security, others may have feared taking time off work for doctor’s visits or surgical procedures, or skipped nonurgent care when money was tight.

The Times also quoted experts who said consumers’ and physicians’ behavior may be changing, and the “anticipation of the health care overhaul” could be a reason. Said the Times: “Many health care experts said they believed that the shift toward publicizing medical error rates and encouraging accountable care seemed to be paying dividends — and that providers were making changes in anticipation of the health care overhaul, which further emphasize accountable care.” But that would explain only part of the slowdown, if it’s truly a factor at all.

Other Exaggerations

Other exaggerations and missteps were minor by comparison.

Clinton claimed Medicare will “go broke in 2016″ if Romney is elected and repeals the federal health care law. Medicare will not “go broke,” but a part of it — the hospital insurance trust fund — would not be able to pay full benefits for hospital services. Physician and prescription drug benefits, financed separately out of general tax revenues and premiums, wouldn’t be affected.

As we explained in our Aug. 22 article, “A Campaign Full of Mediscare,” the Medicare hospital trust fund is on pace to be exhausted by 2024 — or by 2016 if the Affordable Care Act is repealed. But Medicare would still collect payroll taxes sufficient to pay most hospital bills that would come due. Medicare trustees estimate the fund could pay 87 percent of its costs. The funding gap would continue to grow, and by 2050 the fund could cover only 67 percent of its bills. That’s a serious situation to be sure, but it’s not as though Medicare itself would suddenly halt all payments. {Read More}

Yep, looking back things seem to have have been pretty darn good under the Clinton administration. Of course taken into context and compared to the Bush and Obama years. Sigh...

Via: Memeorandum


  1. "Clinton said that “for the last two years, health care costs have been under 4 percent in both years for the first time in 50 years.”

    is that the costs to third party payers or is that the cost of premiums paid by the ordinary citizen?
    from what i have gathered insurance premiums have gone up more than 4%. in fact i hear that college students who can least afford it are paying double and more now for health insurance.

  2. Obama makes me nostalgic for Clinton. He was a good president.

    And yes, he is masterful. The greatest politician of our generation.

  3. The article you cite, Les, leaves out the inclusion of young people up to 26 years old being added to their parents insurance policies thanks to the ACA. These younger people are relative very healthy and so bring down risk in the pool.

    And all this nostalgia about Clinton? Remember, he had a far more liberal GOP to work with. Obama is stuck with a bunch of far-right loons.


  4. i don't know who taught you statistical analysis, jersey, but the risk factor remains the same.the amount of money paid out rises as well as the insurance premiums for each family.

  5. I would love to get Clinton on some sodium pentathol and ask him what he really thinks of Obama. My suspicion is that the answer would be quite revealing.

  6. Yes, Griper, I understand the risk/investment/pool insurance balance, but the ACA is still a big plus for insurance companies. They like it. Look it up. It wouldn't take you more than a minute. It's good for insurance, and those relatively few 24-26 year-old's who need medical care. It HAS already saved money. The ACA, on the whole, so far, has been cost effective and in the black.

    The problem comes from the Medicaid expansion. The states have already a lot of leeway with that money. An expansion that adds even more leeway sounds like and invitation to state and small government corruption, and bad investment of the people's money. Our money must come with STRINGS ATTACHED, not the "conservative," GOP, NSA business relationships.


  7. Griper, I don't know if what I'm writing right now will be endowed with the respect one would hope another decent person would allow, but there is more money coming to the insurance companies, and it 's coming from a low risk pool. Do you get that? Any of you?


  8. Jersey: Oh, be real. The far right has no presence in government, or anywhere in any place of power.

    And as far as "Strongly conservative" goes (very different from "Far right"), he did have to work with Gingrich. And guess what happened then? We got the record-low deficits.

  9. I wonder what the Republicans truly think of Romney.
    Just water board them, no need to waste expensive sodium pentathol.

    1. I suspect that neither side is doing cart-wheels internally.

  10. jersey,
    the whole purpose behind health care reform is the fact that health insurance was seen as being too expensive. by your own words you are declaring that the insurance companies benefit from this but it raises the cost of insurance to the payers of that insurance policy by the addition of this age group onto the family policy thus making health insurance more expensive not less expensive.

    and as i first stated those colllege students who won't have the opportunity to get on a family plan are having their premiums doubled if they wish to attend college as reported here
    college insurance hikes

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